I’m Jake Phillips, The Cofounder Of Prep Hoops, And This Is How I Work

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Thanks to Fueled Collective for underwriting our How I Work series!

 
Minnesota Tech Entrepreneur Jake Phillips is a cofounder of Prep Hoops, a digital media company centered around high school “prep” basketball coverage, analysis, and recruitment.

What one word best describes how you work?

Consistently

What is your current device/hardware/office setup?

In both offices I have desktop PCs with dual monitors, but I use my MacBook equally as much. My phone of choice is an iPhone.

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?

Asana is essential for my daily/weekly planning and staying organized. G Suite, Boomerang, and more recently Slack are all essentials as well.

What your sleep schedule like in terms of hours/wake-up and the morning routine?

I average 6-7 hours a night and try to sneak in at least one 8 hour night a week to catch up. I am a night person and weirdly productive when everyone else is sleeping which makes early mornings a problem.

I normally get up at 7:00 or 7:30 AM and help get our two boys dressed, fed, and out the door by a little after 8:00 AM before heading to the office.

Is there a method to how you schedule your days?

I like to front load my days with more mundane things while the coffee kicks in, and schedule calls and meetings later in the day.

How much time do you spend in vs. out of the office?

95% of “work” hours I am in the office. I have a home office but typically only use it at night or on weekends. We have a great team, and I enjoy working in the office environment we’ve cultivated.

Where is the office?

Our office is located in Maple Grove, and we are actually in the process of moving to a newer office in the next few weeks.

What’s your best time-saving shortcut/life hack?

Asana has been critical for me as our business grows. Everything I need is in one spot, and as we grow the ability to share information and delegate to the rest of our team is extremely valuable.

What is that one thing you have to do, no matter what, every day?

Tell my amazing and brilliant wife and two kids that I love them.

What is your preferred form of communication and why?

Email is definitely preferred for the majority of business related communication. I am kind of a nut about staying organized and email makes that easier.

For anything really important, live communication or a phone call is always best.

On average, how many hours a day do you spend in meetings?

Three or four hours a week for formal sit down meetings or conference calls.

When, where and what do you typically eat for lunch?

Either something quick at my desk or something from a few of the options nearby. Chipotle, Solo’s, Chipotle, and Jimmy John’s are regulars…Also, Chipotle.

How many hour a week do you work on average and do you work in the evenings and/or weekends?

I average 60+ hours a week. I normally work an additional 3-4 nights a week for 3-4 hours after the kids go to bed, and will normally work for a few hours on slower weekends.

What is the best advice you ever received, accepted, and applied?

I was an energy trader for about ten years before joining the entrepreneurial world. Prep Hoops started as a side hustle that evolved into a full time gig, but it wasn’t an easy decision giving up the safety and salary of a day job.

I ran across an article by Shea Serrano after I went full time with Prep Hoops. The article talks about “shooting your shot,” which I feel sums up my move from a day job to running a startup really well. I copied an excerpt to the story here.

Fill in the blank: I’d love to see Tony Kramer from Minnesota’s tech industry answer these same questions.

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